Risking their lives so we can live ours

Thu, Mar 16, 2017

There is a scene in A Few Good Men where the character played by Jack Nicholson provoked by the Tom Cruise character, says that he represents those who stand guard on the wall while we sleep, while we have our parties, while we take liberty for granted, while we enjoy the freedoms that we have, because people like him are standing on that wall, day and night. Leaving aside the characteristics of that part he played, there resonates from his words the reality that exists in every community across the world.

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A solid plan is needed to save the Mayo GMIT campus

Fri, Feb 24, 2017

Thirty years ago when I was trying to blag my way into college, I would have given anything for a course to be located here in Mayo. But at the time, such a possibility was but a pipedream. if you wanted to go to college and you were from Mayo, you had to up sticks, pack the bags, get the thumbing finger out and head over the hills to Galway or, perish the thought, head east.

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Goodnight and God Bless — The end is nigh

Fri, Feb 17, 2017

There’s a time at the end of a concert when the artist, buoyed by cries of ‘more, more,’ comes out to sing just one, then two songs.

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Retaining 'the House' will boost Mayo tourism for the next century

Fri, Feb 03, 2017

A few years ago, when going through old photos at home, I happened upon a set of old monochromes showing myself, about four or five, playing on the grounds of Westport House with the younger members of the Browne family. To this day I have no idea of how this came about, whether I had been kidnapped for the day, or merely abandoned, and the photograph offers no explanation that I have so far been able to decode.

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We turn ten today — thanks for letting us serve you

Fri, Oct 21, 2016

Yeas can go by in a flash and so it has been — it is a decade this week since the Mayo Advertiser first arrived on your doorstep. Being a Mayo native myself and continuing the sterling work what the Galway Advertiser had achieved in Galway since its foundation in 1970, it was with great excitement that we commenced publishing the Mayo Advertiser in October 2006.

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A week of remembrance and resignations

Fri, Jul 08, 2016

“In Flanders Fields the poppies blow

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Time to bring culture gong home for the west

Fri, Jun 10, 2016

Tomorrow five weeks, on July 15, at around ten past one, when you’re about to take the first bite of your lunchtime sandwich, with the radio on, we might might rue the fact we didn’t do more, that we didn’t try harder. Because at that moment, at that time, it will be too late to make a difference. At that time, the winner of the European Capital of Culture title for 2020 will have been announced. And in two centres, there will be crying, beating of breasts and gnashing of teeth. And in one city, there will be gnashing of breasts and beating of teeth.

In one place, people in coloured teeshirts will hug the bejaysus out of each other and cry tears of joy. In two other places, there will be back slapping, utterings of things like ‘musha, sure ’twas great while it lasted. and sure there’s always 2049 or 2082. Sure there is.” And in those cities which lose out, there will be general disappointment and inquisition as to how some other city managed to pass them out.

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The many faces of bravery

Fri, Jun 03, 2016

We applaud bravery in all its forms. Physical bravery because it is an animal instinct, a desire to confront a challenge that is placed in front of us. We saw this in Edinburgh when faced with a daunting challenge, the Connacht team showed bravery to seize the opportunity, to show the world that their team spirit honed on hard days in the west of Ireland can produce a game of the power, strength and finesse which allowed them to claim the crown. That’s physical bravery.

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A man you don't meet every day

Fri, May 27, 2016

We all like someone good batting for us. Someone who can go out, without resort to a note or a rehearsed rote-learned speech. Who sounds lyrical but not flowery. Who speaks sense. Who preaches what is right. We all love it when our leaders are people who orate easily, who can melt hearts with their smiles and their personality, who can defuse the most tense of situations with an ability to bring sides together. Because when our leaders look and sound well, we think that we look and sound well. If these are the people who represent us, by extension, then we are all the better for having them lead us.

We like our pilots to sound confident and sure; we like our legal briefs to be foppyhaired and articulate; we even like our disgruntled footballers to sound like Keano; we want our presidents to sound like Mary Robinson, we want our words to be those of Michael D. And we want those who represent the past, the present and the future to sound like the late Joe McDonagh.

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Joe’s coming, but we’re more chilled about visits these days

Fri, May 20, 2016

It's hard to bate the smell of new paint you get with a visit from a distinguished visitor. Up and down the country for the last month, houses have been getting a once over for the aunts and uncles and the bouncy castle installers who descend on us all at Holy Communion time.

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The unbridled joy of thumbing the open roads

Fri, May 06, 2016

I saw someone thumbing the other day. And I thought serial killer. Freak. What are they up to now, trying to stop cars with a flick of their thumbs. Should I call the guards. Get them arrested, these weirdoes standing by the side of the road, expecting people to stop and let them in. Do they not know that these people have seen Crimecall? And have Twitter. And read scary reports about freaks out at night. Even though this is the morning time. And serial killers tend not to thumb.

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Echoes of the past - how far have we moved on?

Fri, Apr 29, 2016

So here we are again after another week of talks.

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